Summer 2015 Classes

As the spring session winds down, we are looking forward to summer classes in the print studio! This summer I will be teaching First-Time Screenprinting on Paper on Sunday mornings from 10am-1pm. Sign up to learn the fundamentals of screenprinting, and print your own posters, notecards, and fine art prints like this beautiful piece:


 Screenprint by Sandy Reibscheid, current First-Time Screenprinting on Paper student.

If you want another use for your screenprints, I will be teaching a one-day Handmade Sketchbook Workshop on August 23rd, from 2-6pm. This workshop will cover the construction of a coptic stitch book. We will prepare all of the components, from the pages to the bookcovers, and then bind the pieces together using coptic stitch. Each student will leave with a beautiful hand-bound sketchbook.

New (to Lillstreet!) Vintage Metal Type

Springtime is here and with it comes exciting new developments to our Printmaking studio! This past weekend Judy Zeddies headed to Zion, IL for the Platen Press Museum’s annual type sale. Last year Lillstreet bought one of our Chandler and Price Pilot platen presses at the sale. This year we purchased some beautiful metal letterpress type to add to our collection. Some of our purchases were: Bernhard Modern 18 point and 14 point type, Kaufmann 18 point type, Bernhard Fashion 12 point type and 30 point decorative borders.


Pilot Platen Press

The Chandler and Price Pilot platen press we purchased in 2014.

Fabulous Printmaking Exhibit at the Art Institute until October 12


What May Come, The Taller de Grafica Popular and the Mexican Political Print is a wonderful exhibition – mostly relief prints and lithographs from mid-century. With over 100 works, many are political in subject matter, but the draftsmanship is superb, and the detail in the relief prints is astounding. Taller de Grafica Popular (TGP) was a Mexico City-based printmaking workshop, started in 1937. Leopoldo Mendez, a TGP founder, has the largest group of prints in the show, and they are outstanding. The craftsmanship of his relief work is a delight. I really enjoyed getting my nose up next to the glass to see the clean cutting techniques. Click the link below for details from the Art Institute’s website, but hurry down to see the show!

Vintage Meets Contemporary with Judy Zeddies

printmaker Judy Zeddies

When talking with Judy Zeddies, she just jumps right in. I was in Lillstreet’s Printmaking Department, maybe, ten seconds before the tour had begun and I was already learning the particulars about pieces of machinery that I’d never even heard of. Printmaking is really a foreign thing to me, but to tour the space with such a staunch advocate (one would hope so, she’s the head of the department) was enlightening and exciting. And to be honest, it smells really good in there. A mixture of woodiness and industry!

Printmaking—the practice that goes back ages and ages to when you couldn’t just hit ‘Print’—as told by Judy Zeddies is at once vintage and contemporary. Pointing out a drawer of letters to me, she declares: “These are great photo ops. Oooh! Right? With the little stains on ‘em, so antique and exotic. When they’re all organized, they’re not as interesting,” she laughs. That fusion of rustic and new was always in the space. This is, after all, something that humans have been doing a while, but in the studio with Judy it feels fresh and available rather than dusty and stodgy.

“We’re new again. We went without for about six months, and we’re building up again. We have a new press, which is crazy. I’ve never seen one of these except for on a showroom floor. We’ve got it set up on a table top, and I was the first one to make a print,” she offers, clearly proud! “This should last decades,” she says, gesturing towards her beloved contraption.

chair prints by Judy Zeddies

[chair prints by Judy Zeddies]

Then, all of a sudden, we are in the middle of a lecture on the different types of printmaking, which I synthesize here because hey, I didn’t know any of this stuff and maybe you don’t either!

Monotype (Judy’s specialty):

  • print without a fixed matrix, which means it can only happen once
  • similar to reduction printing (cutting away board as it is layered so the print number is limited to however many happen in the first printing)


  • metal plate that is etched with chemistry that allows you to make multiples (25-125 of the same thing)
  • has a fixed matrix—can be replicated
  • similar to relief prints, rolled prints, linoleum blocks (can be inked over again and again)
chair print by Judy Zeddies

[Monotype chair print by Judy Zeddies]

By this time, we are at the box of letters—the type—where I am told pretty quickly that if I pick anything up I have to know where I got it because letters better stay where they’re supposed to stay! A disorganized letter case is, from what I understand, the printer’s nightmare.

“It’s magic antique stuff. Handset type is an old-fashioned trade, really,” Judy explains as she shows me the individual type. “Yeah, letterpress is pretty awesome.”

There’s so much to learn in that Printmaking classrooms!

First-Time Bookmaking

All levels of students are encouraged to participate in this fun class. First-Time Bookmaking allows students to create their own handmade books based on several techniques such as Japanese stab binding and Coptic books. Join First-Time Bookmaking and learn how to create your own one-of-a-kind book! Take a look to see this class and many others offered in the Printmaking Department at Lillstreet Art Center.

First-Time Bookmaking-11 First-Time Bookmaking-10 First-Time Bookmaking-9 First-Time Bookmaking-8 First-Time Bookmaking-7 First-Time Bookmaking-6 First-Time Bookmaking-5 First-Time Bookmaking-4 First-Time Bookmaking-3 First-Time Bookmaking-2 First-Time Bookmaking-1


Multi-Level Screenprinting

Multi-Level Screenprinting is a class in the Printmaking department offered for intermediate/advanced students. In this class, students will focus on more advanced projects such as poster runs, handmade cards and fine art editions. Interested? Check out the list of printmaking classes Lillstreet has to offer!

Multi-level Screenprinting Multi-level Screenprinting Multi-level Screenprinting Multi-level Screenprinting Multi-level Screenprinting Multi-level Screenprinting Multi-level Screenprinting


Want to Learn to Make Screenprinted Designs on Paper?

These students did, which is why they signed up for Matt Ginsberg‘s First-Time Screenprinting on Paper, offered by our Printmaking department at Lillstreet.  When I stopped by the class, students were practicing their registration techniques and just beginning to print their second color onto their work.  It was a lot of fun to join Matt’s class for a day and these are the photos David and I made together.

First_Time_Screenpriting_0001 First_Time_Screenpriting_0009 First_Time_Screenpriting_0013 First_Time_Screenpriting_0016 First_Time_Screenpriting_0017 First_Time_Screenpriting_0021 First_Time_Screenpriting_0026 First_Time_Screenpriting_0036 First_Time_Screenpriting_0046 First_Time_Screenpriting_0048 First_Time_Screenpriting_0050 First_Time_Screenpriting_0056 First_Time_Screenpriting_0058 First_Time_Screenpriting_0060 First_Time_Screenpriting_0068 First_Time_Screenpriting_0081 First_Time_Screenpriting_0088 First_Time_Screenpriting_0094